Kevin Killeen (@KilleenKMOX)

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – St. Louis city is not the only local area with an increased murder rate. St. Louis county has had 40 murders this year, compared to 37 in all of last year.

Related story: Report: Murder Rate Up 60 Percent This Year In St. Louis

St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar says there is a very common theme.

“One of the things we do know is we have an unfortunate situation to where we have an increased prevalence of young African American men that feel like they can solve disputes with firearms.” Belmar says.

Belmar says the numbers also look bad this year because of a “remarkably low” rate in the county in previous years.

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